Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Newcomer's View of the Florida Christian Writers Conference - Part 2

While the entire Florida Christian Writers Conference was brimming over with valuable content, the most rewarding of all for me was the mentoring track with Christine Harder Tangvald. Christine, who is the author of over 100 published children’s books, taught with enthusiasm and amazing energy. Her information-packed workshop challenged me to take a fresh look at writing for children. I must remember what it was like to see the world through a child's eyes.

Christine emphasized showing, in preference to telling, what our characters are experiencing. When we allow dialogue, rather than narration, to describe action and setting, we energize our writing. By using action tags, we move the story forward in a more lively way. In addition, she pointed out the value of engaging children and holding their attention with onomatopoeia, the use of words that imitate natural sounds, such as buzz or hiss. Children love this! Other techniques she suggested are the use of rhyming words, as well as words and phrases in groups of threes, to create rhythm and emphasis.
                                                                                                                Laura Allen Nonemaker


1 comment:

  1. Loved reading this. I grew up in Winter Park -- but now live in Georgia. I attended FCWC a couple of years ago and found it such a wonderful experience. I love attending conferences and when you wrap it with the love of Christ, the feeling you get talking to folks and learning is unlike the others. Look forward to reading more.